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Boston, Houston, Manhattan Transfer

Boston, Houston, Manhattan Transfer

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | Lincoln Center’s annual White Light Festival kicked off with a pleasing program November 1 at the Rose Theater, focused on a reprise of the Pergolesi “Stabat Mater,” some of the most inspiriting — and certainly influential — music of the 18th century, directed and choreographed by Jessica Lang. First seen at Glimmerglass […]

Presenting the Dysfunctional Family Singers

Presenting the Dysfunctional Family Singers

ELI JACOBSON | Opera depends upon — thrives on — heightened emotions and conflicts. Tragic love affairs are great sources for oversized emotional conflicts. But dysfunctional family conflicts are another great source for melodrama, as the upcoming holiday season will undoubtedly remind us. This fall, I had the opportunity to confront several dysfunctional families in […]

Warm Voices for Cold Spring Nights   

Warm Voices for Cold Spring Nights   

BY ELI JACOBSON | It seems that every year the Metropolitan Opera schedules a short revival of a difficult 20th century opera and it turns out to be one of the season highlights.  This season was bookended by two such revivals — a superb “Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk” in November and the sensational return of Stravinsky’s […]

“Oscar” Winning, But Not for Best Score

“Oscar” Winning, But Not for Best Score

BY ELI JACOBSON | It is never a happy task to criticize a work which is created out of love for the best artistic and social reasons by gifted people –– but good intentions do not automatically make great art. (As well, great artists are not always great or even good human beings outside of their […]

Mostly Metropolitan

Mostly Metropolitan

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | Leon Botstein came up with another intriguing novelty December 19 at Alice Tully Hall: after a staging of 1931’s play-to-be-read “The Long Christmas Dinner” by gay author Thornton Wilder, Botstein led his American Symphony Orchestra in Paul Hindemith’s 1960 operatic adaptation. Jonathan Rosenberg directed both multi-generation dramas capably, though I didn’t like […]

Bi-Coastal Opera

Bi-Coastal Opera

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | Neal Goren’s always interesting Gotham Opera started its season October 14 at the Lynch Theater with a Bohuslav Martinu double bill that looked great — Gotham shows almost always do — but left one wanting musically. The urbane Czech composer penned works, including “Julietta” and “The Greek Passion,” that deserve renewed local […]

“Oscar” Moment

“Oscar” Moment

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | From the start we’ve all been very clear that this is not about Oscar as a gay martyr. It’s about Oscar being a great man — honest and brave — to whom awful things were done because he was gay. That’s a difference we’re all clear on.” I was speaking by phone with […]